What would a reasonable follow-up comment or question be?
- "Did your son know how you felt?"
- "You never felt that this war was necessary?"
- "So how did you handle it when he was called up?"
- "I'm so sorry, that must make your loss even more terrible."
Today on Morning Edition Renee Montagne found herself in exactly this situation. And her next question was, "What mementos do you have of your son?"
MEMENTOS! For God's sake, the poor man has just mentioned that his son died in a war that he believes was UNNECESSARY and all Renee Montagne can ask about are mementos. I was floored. Either Montagne is a dithering automaton or the sound editors (censors) decided that we shouldn't be exposed to any more unpatriotic ideas. Whatever the case, it was a bizarre moment. Fortunately, NPR at least did run the piece, which allowed us to hear the name of the organization that the parents started, Families of the Fallen for Change. Also, by searching the father's name, listeners can find this very moving essay by Paul Schroeder which fleshes out his comments about the war.